Guy in Real Life - YA Review by Michelle M

Reader: Michelle M.
Age: 16
Title: Guy In Real Life
Author: Steve Brezenoff
Publisher: Balzer + Bray
Pub Date: 05/27/14
Galley: No
Top 25: No
Convince us to read the book: What originally caught my eye was the summary - the summary had a very unique way of describing the story that seemed original, as compared to many old cliches you often find. When I read the book, I felt that the story was different from the summary, and that the summary did not accurately describe the story. Though this disappointed me, I still enjoyed the story. Elements I found memorable in the story were the plot voice/narrator voice, and the character development. The narrator voices changed often, between the voices of Lesh and Svetlana (the main characters) and the characters of an RPG. I enjoyed reading the main characters' voices and being able to get inside their heads and understand them, but I didn't like the RPG characters as much. I understand that parts of it were essential for the plot of the story, but I felt it also detracted from the story a bit. I thought that the narrator's depiction of Lesh was quite strong, and though his views were somewhat strange, they were understandable. Svetlana was also well written, but I did not feel a connection to her. I thought that later on in the book there was a very good plot twist that was well set up, but I felt that it was resolved too soon and it should have been expanded on more.
Memorable or Forgettable: I had a mixed reaction to this book. There were many flaws I found while reading it, but for some reason I needed to keep reading it. I was intrigued, and I loved the little romance/love story between Lesh and Svetlana. I picked it up because of a very promising summary, was disappointed when the book didn't meet expectations, but kept reading. I loved reading the unconventional love story, and the differences in their lives. I thought the characters were relatable, and I got a kick out of the fact that the main characters live in the same city as me and go to my high school. I would say it was forgettable in that it spent too much time describing the RPG characters and not enough time developing the plot. I found it memorable in that it is unique from many love stories and that there is such a big difference in personalities of the characters.
Cover: The title caught my eye, but my reaction to the cover is neutral. I appreciated the mental image of what the characters looked like, and I appreciated the simplicity of it, but it wasn't eye catching and does not reflect the contents as well as it could.
Age Range: 14 through 17
Quality: 3Q Readable
Popularity: 3P Some teen appeal

tags:  romance / role playing games / ya lit

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